Our Team

CAV Angels is headed by a group of individuals who have been successful as private investors, entrepreneurs, and executives.

Who’s Hoo

Paul Nolde
President/Board Member

Paul Nolde has over a decade of experience in the banking and finance industries serving in multiple sales and management roles for large and small institutions.

As a director at NRV, an early stage venture capital firm in Richmond, VA, Paul co-leads their overall business development strategies and their discernment process around new investment opportunities, as well as supporting several portfolio companies. Prior to arriving at NRV, he served as the Small Business Capital Strategist for Virginia Community Capital, Virginia’s largest community development financial institution. In this capacity Paul was responsible for building the firm’s venture debt portfolio focusing on growth companies, social enterprises, and healthy foods. Before coming to VCC he was Managing Director of a family office in Richmond, VA, preceded by positions at Wells Fargo, Union First Market Bank, Bank of America, and Wachovia. He is an active participant in, and advocate for, Central Virginia’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, serving on the boards of several local organizations and various departments at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia. Paul graduated from UVA in 2001 with a B.A. in Foreign Affairs, complimented by post-grad business studies through the McIntire School of Commerce Business Institute. He lives in Richmond, VA, with his wife, two young boys, and Alaskan Husky. Logo Logo Logo Logo Logo Home About Info Membership Angel Group Contact Our Team CAV Angels is headed by a group of individuals who have been successful as private investors, entrepreneurs, and executives. BOARD MEMBERS Richard Crawford, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Richard Crawford, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Jim Cheng, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Jim Cheng, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Rich Diemer, CPA Co-Chairman of the Board Rich Diemer, CPA Co-Chairman of the Board Jerry Peng (Darden ’03) Board Member Jerry Peng (Darden ’03) Board Member Jesse Ellington, MBA Board Member Jesse Ellington, MBA Board Member Dr. Jim Aylor, Ph.D. Board Member Dr. Jim Aylor, Ph.D. Board Member Paul Nolde Board Member Paul Nolde Board Member Bryan Simms Board Member Bryan Simms Board Member Greg Fairchild, PHD Board Member Greg Fairchild, PHD Board Member
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Jim Cheng
Co-Chair

Jim is a successful entrepreneur and venture capitalist. He founded, led, and exited an IT services firm that he grew from 5 people to 550 people in 9 years, and has started/led additional ventures since.

Rich Diemer
Co-Chair

Rich is a respected chemicals industry senior finance executive with a proven track record. He has served as the CFO at two public and one private, now public global materials companies.

Dick Crawford
Chair Emeritus

Dick is the Chairman of the Crawford Group, Inc., a multi-unit investment business with activities in agriculture, real estate, and advanced technology.

Select CAV Angels Team Members

Lauren Wippman
Diligence Associate

Lauren is an MBA candidate at the UVA Darden School of Business. She has 7+ years of experience in early-stage startups, operations, and luxury hospitality.

Rachel Edwards
Diligence Associate

Rachel is an MBA candidate at the UVA Darden School of Business. She has 10+ years of experience in the fashion and retail industry. Rachel spent the last 4 years working with startups in addition to founding her own business in 2018.

CJ Kimbell
Diligence Associate

CJ is an MBA candidate at the UVA Darden School of Business.  He has 7+ years experience in high-growth startups, operations, and healthcare.

Sambriddi Pandey
Venture Intern

Sambriddi is a third year at the UVA McIntire School of Commerce. She became involved with CAV Angels through the Virginia Venture Fund.

Nicole Krolak
Venture Intern

Nicole is a first year in the College of Arts and Sciences. She is a 2021 CAV Angels Intern.

Eileen McMullen
Venture Intern

Eileen is a third year in the McIntire School of Commerce. She is a 2020 CAV Angels Intern.

Emily Cheng
Venture Intern
Emily is a first year student in the College of Arts and Sciences. She is a 2021 CAV Angels Intern.

Legal Board

Paul Nolde
President/Board Member

Paul Nolde has over a decade of experience in the banking and finance industries serving in multiple sales and management roles for large and small institutions.

As a director at NRV, an early stage venture capital firm in Richmond, VA, Paul co-leads their overall business development strategies and their discernment process around new investment opportunities, as well as supporting several portfolio companies. Prior to arriving at NRV, he served as the Small Business Capital Strategist for Virginia Community Capital, Virginia’s largest community development financial institution. In this capacity Paul was responsible for building the firm’s venture debt portfolio focusing on growth companies, social enterprises, and healthy foods. Before coming to VCC he was Managing Director of a family office in Richmond, VA, preceded by positions at Wells Fargo, Union First Market Bank, Bank of America, and Wachovia. He is an active participant in, and advocate for, Central Virginia’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, serving on the boards of several local organizations and various departments at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia. Paul graduated from UVA in 2001 with a B.A. in Foreign Affairs, complimented by post-grad business studies through the McIntire School of Commerce Business Institute. He lives in Richmond, VA, with his wife, two young boys, and Alaskan Husky. Logo Logo Logo Logo Logo Home About Info Membership Angel Group Contact Our Team CAV Angels is headed by a group of individuals who have been successful as private investors, entrepreneurs, and executives. BOARD MEMBERS Richard Crawford, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Richard Crawford, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Jim Cheng, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Jim Cheng, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Rich Diemer, CPA Co-Chairman of the Board Rich Diemer, CPA Co-Chairman of the Board Jerry Peng (Darden ’03) Board Member Jerry Peng (Darden ’03) Board Member Jesse Ellington, MBA Board Member Jesse Ellington, MBA Board Member Dr. Jim Aylor, Ph.D. Board Member Dr. Jim Aylor, Ph.D. Board Member Paul Nolde Board Member Paul Nolde Board Member Bryan Simms Board Member Bryan Simms Board Member Greg Fairchild, PHD Board Member Greg Fairchild, PHD Board Member
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Jim Cheng, JD/MBA
Co-Chairman of the Board

Jim Cheng, JD/MBA, is a successful entrepreneur and venture capitalist. He founded, led, and successfully exited an IT services firm that he grew from 5 people to 550 people in 9 years, and has started and led additional ventures since.

He served as the Secretary of Commerce and Trade for the Commonwealth of Virginia for 4 years, contributing significantly to economic development, job creation, tourism, film, industry regulation and safety, housing, and a number of other commerce-related fields. He is currently of counsel at the law firm of Lee and Hayes and is working with several private equity and angel investment firms. He also teaches at the University of Virginia School of Engineering.
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Rich Diemer, CPA
Co-Chairman of the Board

Rich is a respected chemicals industry senior finance executive with a proven track record of working within leadership teams that have created significant shareholder value. He has served as the CFO at two public (Albemarle and PolyOne Corporation) and one private, now public (Trinseo, LLC) global materials companies.

During his tenure, Rich has played a key role in creating over $7 billion of shareholder value. After 17 years in public accounting at KPMG, Rich joined Allied-Signal Inc. He was VP-Corporate Controller during the merger with Honeywell, then became CFO of Honeywell's Specialty Materials segment. In addition, Rich spent four years at Honeywell Capital Management, overseeing equity managers and managing a $500 million+ equity portfolio. Rich is on the McIntire Advisory Board, is a board member and Audit Committee Chair of the Virginia Foundation for Public Media, and serves as a Senior Director at Seale & Associates, a Northern Virginia-based global boutique investment banking and consultancy firm. Rich graduated from the McIntire School of Commerce at The University of Virginia in 1980. He is the managing partner of Wickham Glen Holdings, LP, a family office
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Richard Crawford, JD/MBA
Co-Chairman of the Board

Richard Crawford is the Chairman of the Crawford Group, Inc., a multi-unit investment business with activities in agriculture, real estate, and advanced technology.

He is an experienced entrepreneur having started three companies and an experienced angel investor having made several personal angel investments and run the Virginia Active Angel Network. He has been a member of the Darden Faculty since 1988 and is currently a Visiting Executive Lecturer at Darden where he works closely with Professor William Sihler on the Finance of Small Business course. Richard has has been a member of the Law School Faculty since 2008 where he teaches a course in Finance of Small Enterprises. He holds B.A., MBA and JD degrees from the University of Virginia and is the author/co-author of five books.
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Jesse Ellington, MBA
Board Member

Jess has over 30 years of investment and business experience managing alternative assets and individual portfolios.

Through his experience as a portfolio manager, equity analyst, hedge fund manager and investment management consultant, Jess has been able to generate superior investment results with particular focus on risk management and portfolio diversification. Prior to joining Union, Jess worked for Solaris Capital LLC, FDSI (Wilshire Associates), and Wells Fargo Investment Advisors. Jess is a graduate of The University of Virginia and has an MBA from The Darden School of Business at UVA.
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Greg Fairchild, PHD
Board Member

Gregory Fairchild is the Isidore Horween Research Professor of Business Administration at the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business and Associate Dean for Washington, D.C. Area Initiatives and Academic Director of Public Policy and Entrepreneurship.

Fairchild serves as an academic director for Darden's Institute for Business in Society (IBiS). He teaches strategic management, entrepreneurship and ethics in Darden's MBA and Executive Education programs. He has received a number of awards for teaching excellence at the Darden School. His research is likewise renowned, as he was recently the lead investigator studying business models and public policy issues in the field of community development finance, an initiative supported by a three-year $850,000 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Fairchild was named one of five high impact research professors and the sole scholar focused in entrepreneurship by the Financial Times in 2010. In 2009, he received a faculty Pioneer Award presented by the Aspen Institute's Center for Business Education for his leadership and risk taking in integrating ethical, environmental and social issues into the MBA curriculum. In 2011, he was the only academic named as one of "25 Virginians to watch" by Virginia Business Magazine. In 2012, Fairchild was named one of the Top Ten Business School Professors in the World by CNN/Fortune and one of the 50 Best Business School Professors by Poets & Quants. His multidisciplinary work has been cited by Inc. Magazine, The Economist, National Public Radio (NPR), USA Today, New York Times and the Washington Post, among others. Fairchild worked in marketing positions for such industry leaders as Kraft General Foods, Procter & Gamble and Saks Fifth Avenue before embarking on his doctoral studies. Fairchild served on the investment advisory of the Virginia Retirement Service (VRS), the Commonwealth's public pension fund from 2009 to 2012. Governor McAuliffe appointed Fairchild was to the board of Virginia Community Capital, the Commonwealth's largest community-development bank, where he served from 2015 to 2017. University of Virginia President Terry Sullivan appointed Fairchild to the board of University Physician's Group, the University Medical Center's practice plan, where he served from 2012 to 2017. In 2017, Fairchild became a Trustee of Union Square Capital Core Real Estate Fund, a mutual fund; and was appointed by Governor McAuliffe to the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the Commonwealth's economic development authority. In addition to his teaching and research, he is a consultant to corporations, nonprofits and governmental agencies. Fairchild and his wife, Tierney Temple Fairchild (D '94) are the founders of Resilience Education, an organization committed to providing high quality Socratic education to those that might not otherwise afford it ( www.Resilience-Education.org). This is the conduit through which the Darden Prison Program is administered, among other initiatives. Logo Logo Logo Logo Logo Home About Info Membership Angel Group Contact Our Team CAV Angels is headed by a group of individuals who have been successful as private investors, entrepreneurs, and executives. BOARD MEMBERS Richard Crawford, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Richard Crawford, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Jim Cheng, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Jim Cheng, JD/MBA Co-Chairman of the Board Rich Diemer, CPA Co-Chairman of the Board Rich Diemer, CPA Co-Chairman of the Board Jerry Peng (Darden ’03) Board Member Jerry Peng (Darden ’03) Board Member Jesse Ellington, MBA Board Member Jesse Ellington, MBA Board Member Dr. Jim Aylor, Ph.D. Board Member Dr. Jim Aylor, Ph.D. Board Member Paul Nolde Board Member Paul Nolde Board Member Bryan Simms Board Member Bryan Simms Board Member Greg Fairchild, PHD Board Member Greg Fairchild, PHD Board Member
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Aaron Fernstrom
Board Member

Aaron Fernstrom joined the Richard A. Mayo Center for Asset Management in March 2017. Prior to returning to Darden, Fernstrom served in the Asset Management Strategy practice at Deloitte. His engagements included long-term strategic planning, growth strategy, marketing strategy, product development, change management, organizational design, and post-merger operational integration for some of the world’s largest asset managers.

He also led research initiatives in digital marketing, the disintermediation of traditional asset management, direct lending, private debt and the growth of ETFs. Prior to Deloitte, Fernstrom was a venture capitalist focused on early-stage, revolutionary science and technology companies. The cumulative net IRR generated by his venture capital projects is 57.14%. Fernstrom graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a BS in Finance and received his MBA from the Darden School of Business.
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Nikki Hastings
Board Member

Nikki Hastings has a decade of experience in leading and supporting early-stage biotechnology companies through operationalizing and implementing sustainable best practices.

She is the current executive director and co-founder of CvilleBioHub, a private non-profit that offers services and education to the regional industry cluster in Central Virginia. Her prior experiences include career roles that have spanned biotech industry sectors to support the translation of research from universities into commercially sustainable and viable entities. These roles include being on the co-founding team at HemoShear Therapeutics, and the COO for Contraline. Dr. Hastings applies her experiential business acumen to strategy development and execution, while maintaining her scientific perspective and curiosity for successful biotech commercialization. She holds a PhD in biomedical engineering from the University of Virginia.
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Nicole Thorne Jenkins
Board Member

Nicole Thorne Jenkins became the John A. Griffin Dean of the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia on July 1, 2020. Prior to arriving at McIntire, Dean Jenkins was the Von Allmen Endowed Chair of Accountancy and Vice Dean in the Gatton College of Business and Economics at the University of Kentucky.

Prior to Kentucky, she served on the faculty at Vanderbilt University and Washington University in St. Louis. Dean Jenkins received her Ph.D. in Accounting from the University of Iowa and completed her undergraduate work in Accounting and Finance at Drexel University. Her research interests include the investigation of financial reporting failures, share repurchase, and the effect of social networks on performance outcomes. Her teaching experience has focused on financial reporting topics in both executive education, graduate, and undergraduate programs. Dean Jenkins is a Certified Public Accountant and is the immediate past president of the Financial Accounting & Reporting Section of the American Accounting Association. Prior to becoming an academic, she was an Auditor and Consultant at PriceWaterhouse and Coopers & Lybrand. Additionally, she consults and serves as an expert witness in matters related to financial reporting, valuation, and estimation of damages.
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Clare Lewis, JD/MBA
Board Member & Secretary

Clare represents venture capital and private equity fund investors, as well as emerging growth and middle market companies generally and in connection with mergers and acquisitions, equity financings, corporate governance, intellectual property, data privacy and security, executive compensation, and tax matters at McGuireWoods.

Prior to joining McGuireWoods, she was an associate in Technology Investment Banking at Wells Fargo Securities and held FINRA Investment Banking Series 79 and 63 Licenses. Clare is lecturer at the University of Virginia School of Law, where she teaches corporate law and entrepreneurship. She holds the CIPP/US certification as a Certified Information Privacy Professional from the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP). Clare is a 2005 graduate of UVA, a 2011 graduate (MBA) of UVA’s Darden School of Business and a 2011 graduate (JD) of UVA’s School of Law; she is a member of the Bar in New York and Virginia.
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Christine Mahoney
Board Member

Christine Mahoney is a Professor of Public Policy and Politics at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy and Director of Social Entrepreneurship at the University of Virginia. She studies social justice advocacy and direct action through social entrepreneurship and impact investing.

Her first book Brussels vs. the Beltway (Georgetown University Press) explored how advocates shape public policy in two of the most powerful political systems on the planet: the US and the EU. She conducted fieldwork in 7 conflict zones in Asia, Africa, Eastern Europe and Latin America for her second book Failure and Hope: Fighting for the Rights of the Forcibly Displaced (Cambridge University Press). The book argues we need to advance impact investing in forced displacement solutions for the 80 million people displaced by violent conflict worldwide. To help foster innovative solutions to social problems she launched and leads Social Entrepreneurship at the University of Virginia. Over the past ten years, SE@UVA has introduced courses on social entrepreneurship, a minor, a concept competition, scholarships to work with social enterprises and a myriad of student activities providing hands-on experience in social innovation.
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Jerry Peng
Board Member

Mr. Peng is an investor and entrepreneur, living in Charlottesville, Virginia. Mr. Peng was most recently the founder and CEO of a greenfield project in Virginia applying leading innovative technology from China to produce eco-friendly products.

Mr. Peng’s career spans over twenty years in various senior roles across corporate finance, strategy and banking, with global institutions including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Standard Chartered Bank. Most recently he served as managing director with Goldman Sachs in Asia, managing corporate financing and derivatives business and corporate securities sales in China. Mr. Peng serves as a trustee on the University of Virginia Darden Business School Foundation Board, and as council member of Darden Global Advisory Council and Batten Institute Advisory Council. He is also a trustee of the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges’ Board. He is co-founder and co-president of the China alumni clubs for Darden and UVA. He earned a BE in Engineering and Finance from Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics and an MBA from the Darden Business School.
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Brian Plum
Board Member

Brian K. Plum is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Blue Ridge Bankshares, Inc. (Ticker: BRBS) and its wholly-owned bank subsidiary Blue Ridge Bank, National Association. He has been with the company since August 2006.

Prior to joining the company he was in public accounting, and has been named a Super CPA three times by Virginia Business and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants. He is currently Chair-Elect of the Virginia Association of Community Banks, and involved with various civic and charitable groups as a board member and volunteer. He holds a B.S. in Economics and Accounting from Eastern Mennonite University, an MS in Accounting from James Madison University, and an MBA from the Darden Business School at the University of Virginia. He is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
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Bill Porter
Board Member

Bill served 25 years as COO and General Counsel in Silicon Valley, focusing on growing/scaling tech startups from angel rounds to acquisition or IPO. His last two companies were acquired for $1B+.

James Small
Board Member

James H. Small is a principal at Southern Engineering Corporation and partner in several commercial and residential real estate partnerships throughout the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area. 

Previously, James served as a senior foreign service officer at the U.S. Agency for International Development, where he held leadership positions in country missions and steered the Agency’s private sector development and public-private-partnership initiatives. Over the years, James has also been actively involved in providing technical and financial support to various international non-profit organizations, engaged in micro-finance, refugee resettlement, and humanitarian relief in conflict-prone/fragile countries. James’ strong ties to the University of Virginia have evolved with the attainment of degrees (MA, PhD, MBA) and the presence of his twin daughters (‘19) Isabella and Gabriella at the University.
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Lily West
Board Member

The University of Virginia Alumni Association’s President and Chief Executive Officer.

Educational Advisory Board

John May, MPA
Advisor

John May, MPA, is a successful venture capitalist that specializes in angel group formation. He has been actively involved in the venture capital space for north of 25 years, has co-authored and co-edited multiple books on the subject of angel investing, and has received numerous honors and awards validating his high degree of knowledge and success in the venture-investing arena.

He is currently the Investment Director and General Partner at a UK venture capital firm; a guest lecturer at the Darden School of Business; and the owner of an organization that innovatively organizes early stage private equity for entrepreneurial ventures.
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John Huston
Advisor

During his 30-year commercial banking career, John’s positions at banks in five states ranged from Chief Lending Officer to Chief Credit Officer to CEO.

After retiring from banking in 2000 he commenced his business angel activities, and has now provided capital to 60+ Ohio entrepreneurs. John has served on the Ohio Venture Capital Authority and the Ohio Third Frontier Advisory Board, having been appointed by Governors of both political parties. He is a Founding Director of VentureOhio, the trade association providing the unified voice for Ohio’s innovation community. When John launched the first Ohio TechAngel Fund (OTAF) in 2004 with 50 investors, the group became a founding member of the Angel Capital Association (ACA). Now with five funds and 300+ members, OTAF is one of the world’s largest angel groups. John is also a member of the North Coast Angel Funds (Cleveland), and the East Central Ohio TechAngel Funds (Athens). He is a founding member of Columbus-based X-Squared Angels, a group that invests nationwide in start-up ventures with diverse management teams. Internationally, John is well known as the past Chairman of both the ACA and the Angel Resource Institute (ARI) and as the recipient of the Hans Severiens Award for angel leadership. Upon graduating with a BA in economics from UVA (Class of 1967) John received his US Navy commission. While stationed in Georgia and flying planes for the navy he received an MBA from Georgia Southern University. He and his wife reside in Columbus, Ohio and have children and grandchildren in Cleveland and San Francisco.
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William W. Sihler
Advisor

William W. Sihler retired in 2015 after teaching corporate and institutional finance for 48 years at the University of Virginia's Colgate Darden Graduate Business School where he held the Ronald E. Trzcinski Professorship in Business Administration. 

Before coming to Darden, he taught for three years at the Harvard Business School, resigning to accept a tenured appointment at Darden. From 1977-1994 Sihler was also the Executive Director of the Center for International Banking Studies. In 1982, he received the University of Virginia's Alumni Association's Distinguished Professor Award. He has served on several corporate boards including three NYSE companies, two of whose audit committees he chaired. He authored and co-authored seven books and two books of cases, usually working closely with Richard Crawford. He earned an A.B., MBA, and DBA at Harvard University.
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Randy Castleman, MBA
Advisor

Randy Castleman is an experienced venture investor and advisor to institutional investors on direct investments, alternative asset strategies, and manager selection for venture capital, funds of funds, and secondaries.

He co-founded Court Square Ventures (Automated Insights, CSTV, Yandex), a VC firm investing in enabling technologies, where he was involved in all aspects of the firm's operations, including fund conception and fundraising, deal sourcing and selection, portfolio management and company development, investment liquidity, and relationships with limited partners. Prior to Court Square, he managed a family office, was involved in the formation of synthetic biology startup Rheogene (acquired by Intrexon), and was a special advisor to a White House-convened advisory council on IP, privacy, and security. Randy has a BA from Princeton University, an MBA from the University of Virginia’s Darden School, and was an EIR at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University.
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Founders Advisory Council

Bryan Simms
Chair

Co-Managing Partner at DS9 Capital. Co-Founder, OrchcestraRx, a DS9 portfolio company. JP Morgan/Lazard trained banker turned insurtech corporate/business development practitioner delivering commercial pipeline to sustainably grow companies.

Most recent engagement at Traffk, a DS9 Capital Portfolio company as Head of Corporate Development . Duke undergraduate (Varsity Athlete), UVa Darden graduate, Darden Trustee Emeritus, and CavAngels Board Member Emeritus. Competitive martial arts hobbyist holding Black Belts in Jiu Jitsu, Kung Fu and Muay Thai based mixed martial arts.
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Medical Advisory Council

Jim Daniero, MD MS
Chair

Jim Daniero, MD MS is an Otolaryngologist at UVA and an expert in laryngeal and upper airway surgery.  His clinical and research focus involves advanced techniques for upper airway reconstruction and the development of novel biomaterials for tissue engineering applications.

Dr. Daniero’s training in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery involves the medical and surgical care of disorders involving the head, face, and neck. Dr. Daniero also serves as the Director of the Voice and Swallowing Center and the Center for OtoRhinoLaryngology Innovation (cORLi) at UVA. These directorships allow him to fulfill his dual passions of providing cutting-edge clinical care and developing novel medical solutions. Prior to attending medical school, he completed a Master’s Degree in Biotechnology at Georgetown University, which provided a window into innovation and translational research that has remained a passion throughout his career.
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